Skip the ground beef burgers and try out a Healthy Turkey Burger Recipe instead! These turkey burgers are filled with simple ingredients and they're made in under 30 minutes. Even if you have busy weeknights, you can still get a healthy dinner on the table in no time at all!
An easy turkey burger recipe is a staple on our monthly dinner menu. I often skip the grill, and instead start my burgers in a cast iron skillet on the stove. Once they have a good sear on the outside, they're transferred to the oven to finish cooking.
Once of the reasons I love turkey burgers, is that they are a light, high-protein, low-fat beef burger alternative. Of course you can add ingredients to them that might make them a little less healthy though.
So you might be wondering what makes my turkey burger recipe "healthy." These turkey burgers are a healthier burger option because they do not contain eggs, bread crumbs or cheese.
Eggs and cheese both increase the fat content of a burger. Bread crumbs increase the amount of low-fiber carbohydrates in a burger. The lack of bread crumbs also make these burgers an excellent gluten free and low carb burger option. No cheese means these are dairy free too!
If you don't want to make healthy turkey burgers from scratch, then you need to try out my recipe for Air Fryer Frozen Turkey Burgers.
If you love cooking with turkey like I do, then you need to try out some of my other turkey recipes! My favorites include my Air Fryer Turkey Tenderloin, Ground Turkey Quesadilla, and my Pink Pasta Sauce with Ground Turkey.
- Ground turkey - I always purchase lean ground turkey that is about 85-93% lean. Not fat-free or 98-99% fat free lean ground turkey. Fat adds flavor and moisture to ground turkey. When you remove too much of the fat you risk having dry and bland meat. Even though I keep this burger on the low-fat side, they don't need to be 100% fat free. You will only need 1 pound of ground turkey for this ground turkey recipe.
- Fresh spinach - Spinach sneaks some veggies into this recipe, which increases the health factor! Spinach is one of the few salad greens that cook down in recipes. I love including spinach in recipes whenever I can.
- Fresh parsley - Parsley adds some flavor to this recipe. You could substitute in dried parsley if you don't have fresh. Dried herbs are more concentrated than fresh herbs though, so you will only need about 1 tablespoon of dried parsley.
- Dijon mustard - Dijon mustard is made with spicy brown and black mustard seeds and does not contain as much vinegar as traditional yellow mustard does. Dijon mustard has a smooth and creamy texture, is slightly spicy and has a little bit of tang.
- Worcestershire sauce - Worcestershire adds a slight umami flavor when it is added to recipes.
- Onion powder, garlic powder, salt, black pepper - This combination makes an excellent turkey burger seasoning.
- Olive oil - A little olive oil is used to oil the skillet.
*See the recipe card below for a detailed list of ingredients with quantities.
- Large mixing bowl
- Cutting board & chopping knife
- Measuring cups & measuring spoons
- Large skillet or frying pan - A large cast iron skillet or non-stick frying pan will work best!
- Rimmed baking sheet - Nordic Ware baking sheets are my favorite!
How to make
Step 1: Preheat your oven to 350°F.
Step 2: Add all of your ingredients, except for the olive oil, to a large mixing bowl. Using your hands, mix the ingredients together until they are fully combined.
Step 3: Form your turkey burger patties into four, equal portions. Flatten them until they are about the size of your palm and about ½ inch thick. Make a small indentation in the center of each patty. This will help the patties keep their size and shape while they are cooking.
I place them onto a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. After I transfer them to the frying pan, the parchment gets thrown away.
Step 4: Transfer the turkey patties to a large, hot, oiled skillet. I prefer to use a cast iron skillet, but a nonstick frying pan would work as well. Sear each side of the turkey burger for about 4 minutes per side, over medium heat.
Step 5: The turkey burgers will finish cooking in the oven. You can either transfer your cast iron skillet right into the oven or place the burgers onto a rimmed baking sheet in a single layer. Cook the burgers for 10-15 minutes, or until they have reached an internal temperature of at least 165°F.
Start checking your burgers at 10 minutes. You don't want to overcook your burgers. You want a nice, juicy turkey burger!
Step 6: Remove your burgers from the oven, add your favorite toppings and enjoy one of the best turkey burgers you've ever made!
Variations - change it up!
My healthy turkey burger recipe is excellent as is, without any variations! If you want to make some changes though, here are a few ideas for you.
- Add some cheese! I would add crumbly feta cheese to the ground meat mix mixture. You could also top your burger with a melted slice of sharp cheddar cheese or American cheese.
- Make it spicy! You can add some heat to your burger with some chili powder, red pepper flakes or hot sauce.
- Make it Mediterranean style! Mediterranean or Greek turkey burgers are incredibly common and are usually topped with feta cheese, roasted red peppers, tzatziki sauce and Greek olives.
- Serve your turkey burger patty on a sesame hamburger bun, brioche burger bun, in lettuce wraps or over salad greens.
- A delicious burger needs some toppings! Top your burgers with sliced red onion, fresh tomato slices, pickles and greens like arugula, spinach or romaine lettuce.
- All turkey burgers need some sauce too right!? Top your burger with ketchup, mayonnaise, yellow mustard, Dijon mustard, BBQ sauce or ranch dressing.
- Serve these easy homemade turkey burgers with Air Fryer Sweet Potato Fries, Tortellini Salad, green salad, potato chips or steak fries!
Healthy topping and serving ideas
- For maximum health factor, keep your toppings and sides veggie based!
- Veggie based toppings are your greens, raw vegetables like onions and tomato and low sugar sauces.
- Low sugar sauces are going to be all kinds of mustard, low-fat mayo and avocado crema.
- Skip the wheat based bun and go for a lettuce wrap. You could also try a gluten free wrap or a low carb/high fiber wrap.
My Healthy Turkey Burger Recipe is excellent for meal prep! These turkey burgers store easily in the fridge, in an air-tight container, for up to 4 days.
Reheat the burger patties in the microwave for about 1 minute, on a microwave safe plate. Add your toppings and your burger bun after they're reheated.
Turkey burgers also freeze well!
Expert tips & tricks
- Prepare all of your burger toppings before you start cooking your burgers.
- Have your oven preheated so that you can transfer your skillet straight from the stove top to the hot oven.
- Don't use a panini press or press your burgers down with the back of your spatula while they are cooking. You want to keep those juices INSIDE of your burger! Pressing them will release the juice and result in a dry burger... which nobody likes!
- If you don't have a high quality extra virgin olive oil to cook with, you can use avocado oil, canola oil or butter.
- When you're searing the outside of your turkey burgers in the hot oil, a splatter screen will prevent oil from popping up out of the pan while your cooking.
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